Stem Elongation

Last updated: November 22, 2021

What Does Stem Elongation Mean?

Stem elongation, as the term suggests, refers to the rapid growth in the length of the internodes of the upper stem before the reproductive phase starts for the plant.

Although this may be common in a few cases, it is still an abnormal condition for most crops. Stem elongation causes many problems for the plant, such as skinny stems that are too weak to support large flowers, as well as plants that grow too high vertically and appear spindly, so it should be prevented.

Gibberellins, a plant hormone, can help control stem elongation and provide desired crop yield.


Maximum Yield Explains Stem Elongation

In order to understand stem elongation, it is important to understand the effects of gibberellins. Gibberellins induces stem elongation in genetic dwarf and rosette dwarf plants; these plants, though genetically predisposed to be dwarfs, undergo stem elongation with the help of gibberellins.

Stem elongation often occurs quickly. One outcome of this quick development is that there is exceptional contention for minerals and nutrients, and this may result in the death of some shoots in a few sections of the plant.

Among the many growth phases of a crop, the reproductive phase is one of the most important ones. Stem elongation tends to happen just before this phase and may interrupt the normal reproductive cycle of the plant. It can also kill nearby roots.

In wheat plants, as the stem keeps on growing, the newly formed tillers also die and production is stopped. High-yielding winter assortments of crops like wheat and maize have a long vegetative stage and are initiated to blossom by a time of cold winter. During this period, the nodes and internodes within the plant compete for resources and some of them die out. The other stems elongate and cause an imbalance in the growth of the plant. This is the major reason stem elongation should be avoided.

Stem elongation is a popular term used by wheat farmers and tulip growers. Stem elongation is essentially rapid growth of the stems, which creates competition for resources in some plants and causes die-back in some parts of the plant, especially wheat.


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